Also known as the Webbing Clothes Moth, this small pale golden-brown moth has reddish hairs on its head and usually lives indoors. As indicated by its name, its larvae will eat clothes or carpets made of wool or other natural materials but you can deter them from households.

The Brighton Wainscot is a straw-coloured moth with two distinctive pale broad stripes. It was first seen in Britain near Brighton in the late 19th century, which gives it its common name. During most of the 20th century it appeared to be thriving and was widely recorded across southern England but has since rapidly declined.

It overwinters as an egg which is laid on the foodplant in late summer. The larvae hatch in late spring or early summer. They pupate in the ground between June and July.

The distinctive central cross-line is largely red and as the name suggests it is often accompanied by a central reddish blush on the forewings. The forewing tip is pointed and the outer edge has a central bulge.

The adults are sometimes seen during the day resting on the leaves of trees or Bracken and other vegetation. They feed on tree flowers at night and are attracted to light. The larvae can be found from late June to July and mid-August to September before they overwinter as pupae attached to a fallen oak leaf.

The adults fly at night and are attracted to light. In the day, they hide in ground cover.

The larvae can be seen from July to mid-September, remaining on the foodplant when young and then as they become larger feeding mainly at night and hiding in leaf litter during the day.

Size and Family

  • Family – Thyatiridae
  • Medium Sized
  • Wingspan Range – 32-38mm

Conservation status

  • UK BAP: Not listed
  • Common

Caterpillar Food Plants

Bramble (Rubus fruiticosus).

Three roughly parallel, diagonal white lines crossing the forewings. The head and thorax are green, the antennae are orange and front legs are pink. The male also has bright pink or pinkish-brown fringes to the wings.

The adults are attracted to light. The caterpillars can be seen from July to September and then they overwinter as pupae on the underside of the foodplant leaves or in a bark crevice.

Buff-coloured wings with a distinctive pink or brownish-red line across the fore and hind wings. When at rest the wings are held flat so that these markings form a virtually straight line between the forewing tips. The fringes are also a bright pink colour.

They can be seen during the day around low vegetation. They overwinter as larvae which can be seen in July and from September to the following April. They pupate near the ground among plant debris.

An unmistakeable and distinctive moth with pinkish-brown markings. The wings are folded along the body at rest which gives the impression of a withered autumn leaf.

The adults are attracted to light and feed on flowers of Common Reed and other grasses. They are frequently seen during the day, resting in the open, on walls, fences or vegetation. They overwinter as larvae so the caterpillars can be seen all year round, feeding in mild weather. They usually pupate in a cocoon just under the soil.

Most UK records are of adults attracted to light, but caterpillars can occasionally be found, the offspring of earlier arrivals.

Usually flies and feeds at dusk and early dawn, though can be active late at night.  Feeds from flowers like Red Valerian and Petunia. Cannot overwinter, though cccasionally larvae can be found in the British Isles in June-July and September-October.

A very scarce immigrant from southern Europe, seen between May and October.

Size and Family

  • Family: Hawk-moths (Sphingidae)
  • Large: 5.5-7.5cm 

Particular Caterpillar Food Plants

Perennial herbaceous spurges; larvae rarely found in Britain, though did breed several times on the south coast in 19th century, usually on Spurge (Euphorbia spp.). 

More brightly coloured, though smaller, than the Elephant Hawk-moth (D. elpenor), which has a more greenish than yellowish tinge. Adults fly between May and July. Attracted to light.

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